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Location Portugal, Madeiran Archipelago
Central coordinates 16o 31.18' West  32o 28.35' North
IBA criteria A1, A4ii, B1ii, C1, C2
Area 45,500 ha
Altitude
Year of IBA assessment 2008

Sociedade Portuguesa para o Estudo das Aves



Site description This IBA includes the marine area adjacent to the Desertas island terrestrial IBA (PT085) and comprises three uninhabited volcanic islands: Ilhéu Chão, Deserta Grande and Bugio. Deserta Grande is the largest, but it is in Bugio that breeds the only colony of Fea's Petrel known in Europe, with a population of less than 200 pairs. Ilhéu Chão, located north of those two, is the smallest and lowest of the three, and has a colony of Yellow-legged gulls with around 700 pairs. The Desertas hold some of the most important colonies of seabirds in the Atlantic, with large populations of Procellariiforms and the only European population of Fea's Petrel. It is also one of the most important areas for the reproduction of the monk-seal Monachus monachus in Europe (Neves and Pires 1999). The marine IBA include areas that are used by the pole and line tuna fishing fleet to fish for live bait.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Calonectris diomedea breeding  1994  6,000 breeding pairs  poor  A4ii, B1ii, C2  Not Recognised 
Pterodroma feae breeding  2008  160-180 breeding pairs  medium  A1, A4ii, B1ii, C1, C2  Not Recognised 
Puffinus assimilis breeding  1994  300 breeding pairs  poor  B1ii, C2  Not Recognised 
Bulwer's Petrel Bulweria bulwerii breeding  1994  1,500 breeding pairs  poor  B1ii, C2  Least Concern 
Band-rumped Storm-petrel Hydrobates castro breeding  1994  1,000 breeding pairs  poor  A4ii, B1ii, C2  Least Concern 

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Ilhas Desertas Biogenetic Reserves 9,672 protected area contained by site 0  
Ilhas Desertas Habitats Directive 0 protected area overlaps with site 0  
Ilhas Desertas Natural Reserve 0 protected area contained by site 0  
Ilhas Desertas - PTDES0001 Birds Directive 11,302 protected area overlaps with site 0  

Habitats

IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Sea Sea inlets and coastal features  100%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
military -
nature conservation and research 21%
Notes: lhas Desertas SPA (PTDES0001); lhas Desertas SCI (PTDES0001); Ilhas Desertas Nature Reserve; European Council Biogenetic Reserve;

Protection status lhas Desertas SPA (PTDES0001); Regional Legislative Decree nº 5/2006/M, of 2nd March - 21% coincides with the IBA. lhas Desertas SCI (PTDES0001); Regional Legislative Decree nº 5/2006/M, of 2nd March - 21% coincides with the IBA. Ilhas Desertas Nature Reserve; Regional Decree-law nº 9/95/M - 21% coincides with the IBA. European Council Biogenetic Reserve; Classified by the European Council of Ministers in 1992 – 21% coincides with the IBA.

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Desertas. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 30/08/2014

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